Future Continuous

Basic form

Subject + WILL + BE + Verb (continuous form)

Quick examples

  • Tomorrow at this time, I will be taking my English langauge exam.
  • Ben won't be eating the dinner now. He usually eats it around noon!
  • Will you be comingto the party tonight?

We mainly use the Future Continuous to indicate that we will be in the middle of doing something in a specified time in the future. There are also two other uses, listed below:

Use

  1. Future actions in progress
  2. Guesses about the present or the future
  3. Polite questions about somebody's intention
Good to know

If you want to learn about somebody's intentions, you should always use the Future Continuous rather than the Present Simple. Using the Future Simple implies that you want to influence somebody's decision. Questions become much more objective if formed in the Future Continuous.

Compare:

  • Will you come home? (= I want you to come home)
  • Will you be coming home? (= I just want to know)

Use 1: Future actions in progress

The first use of the Future Continuous is to express future action in progress.

  • In an hour, I will be sitting in front of my TV.
  • In the evening, I will be baking a birthday cake.

Use 2: Guesses

Use this tense also to make guesses about something in the present or future.

  • He won't be coming any time soon. He is still at the office.
  • Beatrice will be getting married very soon.

Use 3: Questions

And the last use of the tense is to make polite questions about something or somebody.

  • Will you be coming home before or after 10 PM?
  • Will you be goingto the supermarket? I have something to buy.

Form

Contracted forms (more)

Important

The Future Perfect appears in two forms: "will" form and "going to" form which can be used interchangably.

Example:
  • "She will have finished" means "she is going to have finished"

Declarative Sentences

Subject + Auxiliary verb + Auxiliary verb + Verb + ing
e.g. I/a dog etc. will be e.g. working/going/making
  • She'll be having a bath when I'm back home. (Use 1)
  • Tomorrow at nine, I will be hosing off (=washing with a hose) my car. (Use 1)
  • This time next week,I am going to be throwing a party. (Use 1)
  • I'll be watching TV when my mother arrives. (Use 1)
  • They will be geting home just about now. (Use 2)
Notice

Like any of the Future Tenses, Future Continuous cannot be used in sentences beginning with: while, when, before, by the time, if, etc.

  • By the time, you will be finishing your paiting.

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[ Tomorrow at this time, I will be getting bored at school! (Use 1) ]

Questions

Auxiliary verb + Subject + Auxiliary verb + Verb + ing ?
will I/you/we etc. be dancing / taking
  • Is she going to be cooking when we knock at the door? (Use 1)
  • Will Mark be playing football at 6 p.m.? (Use 1)
  • Will you be using the screwdriver? (Use 3)

Negative Sentences

Subject + Auxiliary verb + Auxiliary verb + Verb + ing
e.g. I/a dog etc. will not be e.g. working/going/making
  • We won't be having supper tomorrow before 8 o'clock. (Use 1)
  • Iam not going to be learning English tomorrow at this time. (Use 1)
  • John won't be sleeping now (= I think John isn't sleeping now) (Use 2)

Check your understanding!

  • Future Continuous Exercise 1
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